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Agreement close in Skywest negotiations

A PILOT pay dispute at regional air carrier Skywest has turned a corner after prolonged discussions, with negotiators confident a deal will be worked out soon.

After more than eight months of discussions, it is understood Skywest management has backed down on a proposal to re-arrange pilot rosters in exchange for pay increases.

The 107-strong pilot workforce, represented by the Transport Workers Union, was moving towards industrial action before negotiations made some headway last week.

"We are actually a bit closer to getting an agreement," TWU organiser Rick Burton said.

The regional air carrier is listed on the Alternative Investment Market of the London Stock Exchange, and is controlled by Singapore-based investment company Captive Vision Capital (CVC).

Skywest management was unavailable for comment, but recently said it would negotiate in good faith.

It is understood the pilots asked for a 17 per cent increase over three years and were against a change to the rosters, which they argued would require pilots to do more hours for no extra pay.

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